Be sure to check for city directories from all the places where a family resided and try not to miss a year. This may mean checking multiple libraries and websites with digitized images. If you skipped some years, what have you missed? The year in which the oldest son has the designation â€œUSAâ€ after his name meaning he was in the military service? Those missed years may give the death date of the head of the family, tell that Uncle Horace moved to St. Louis, and give the name of the railroad grandpa worked for instead of just the term â€œlaborer.â€ For the son, Malcolm, it might tell that he attended Kansas Wesleyan University, and that leads to the alumni office. A recent check at the 1890 Census Substitute at AncestryÂ gave me some surprises for a great-granduncle, Fred Slaker.
The 1890 census substitute includes information from city directories generally around 1888-92. Among the many other places to search for directories are the WorldCat, Family History Library,
Allen County Public Library, and of course, libraries and historical societies in the actual geographic area. Â